Saturday, March 19, 2011

Sweetener-free Sunday!

OK, so I know I missed last Sunday after I promised to do this every Sunday in March. I spaced! So here is my apology with a bonus recipe...yes, two for the price of one with this post :)

I'm a big custard lover. Especially for breakfast. If ice cream were high in protien, fiber, and low in refined sugars and empty calories (and while I'm at it- dairy free!)- I would eat it every morning for breakfast! Lately, I have been thinking about my love for a particular custardy, breakfast treat- rice pudding (or porridge as it's sometimes called). When we lived in Fort Collins, we would go to a quaint little New Orleans inspired breakfast place called Luciele's. One time, while there with friends, someone told me to get the Rice Pudding Porridge, which had hints of orange/ citrus and came topped with raspberry sauce, currants, and cream! It was heaven. I could not eat that if I ever got the chance to go to Luciele's again, because I now know that I am pretty allergic to dairy....bummer!

I don't know why but the craving for orange and cranberry comes to me sometimes and I just have to figure out a way to make it! I also wanted to recreate Luciele's recipe without eggs or any dairy products (kind of hard to do since those two things are in the definition for "custard"!). But coconut milk and Quinoa flakes (descent source of protien, iron, and fiber) saved the day! Coconut milk provides the richness that dairy cream does, and quinoa flakes, similar to cream of wheat when cooked, provide the thickness and puddingyness (simply for lack of a better word:) that eggs would have.

So for this Sunday's Sweetener-free recipe, I present Qunioa Pudding Porridge, yay! (can you tell I like this recipe :)

Sweetener-free Orange Cranberry Quinoa Breakfast Pudding Porridge
Serves 1
Ingredients and Materials
- 1/3 cup Quinoa Flakes (I use Ancient Harvest which can also be found at Whole Foods and most local whole food markets)
- 1 orange, zested first, then peeled
- Coconut milk
- Pinch of salt
- Banana (optional for added sweetness)
- Frozen or fresh raspberries
- Frozen or fresh cranberries
- Lemon juice
- Quart sized pan for the stove top
- Zest the orange into a food processor or high powered blender (I use a Vitamix), then peel the orange- removing the pith- and discard the peel. If using a food processor de-seed first as well. If desired, you can add 1/8-1/4 banana for a sweeter pudding porridge. Blend until the orange is pureed, and add enough coconut milk to make 1 cup total liquid when combined with the pureed orange. Blend with a pinch of salt.
- Transfer the 1 cup coconut milk/ orange/ zest/ salt mixture to a pot and heat on medium until it begins to boil, then turn down to low.
- Add the quinoa flakes and heat about another minute. The mixture should thicken up quite a bit. Transfer to a bowl
- Puree equal parts of frozen raspberries and cranberries together in a food processor or high powered blender with about 1 tsp lemon juice per cup of berries.
o TIP: I do this in a big batch (because I know I eat this a lot now!)- a cup of raspberries and a cup of cranberries at a time, then I freeze the mixture in ice cube trays to have on hand. When my pudding porridge is ready, I just pop a couple ice cubes on top and the quinoa pudding is hot enough to melt them right away. If you are just making this one time, I would just macerate a Tbsp of each raspberry and cranberry with a dash of lemon juice. This can be done with a fork, potato masher, or pastry blender.
- Top the quinoa pudding porridge with the berry mixture and enjoy!

The bonus recipe for today is a variation of the recipe I posted two weeks ago, Sweetener FreeElana Amsterdam's recipe as a guide, but I made it into more of a berry bar for dessert instead.
Berry Breakfast Bars, made sweetener-free:
Makes 9-12 bars

Simply make Elana's recipe as described here, replacing the following:

I replaced the 1/4 cup agave with 1/4 cup unsweetened, organic apple sauce
- I pureed the applesauce with the oil added 1/4 banana + 1 Tbsp water in a food processor (as in step 2 of Elana's directions)
- Finally, I replaced the 1/4 cup raisins with 1/3 cup finely chopped pear (or apple would work as well)
Here is how to alter Elana's method to make Berry Breakfast Bars:
- Make her recipe as directed (and make above substitutions for sweetener-free, if you like). But stop before you spread the mixture into the greased pan.
- Then, reserve 1/3 of the batter in another bowl while you spread the remaining 2/3 of the batter into a 8"x8" glass baking dish.
- Puree 1/2 cup of berries of your choice (I used strawberries and raspberries) with 1 tsp lemon juice. Then spread this over the 2/3 batter in the pan.
- Top that by sprinkling the reserved 1/3 batter, pinching it onto the berry mixture.
- Bake at 325 for 25-35 minutes until browned on top.
- The berry mixture will congeal after a while. In the pic above, it's a little runny because it was straight out of the oven- I couldn't wait!

This post has been linked up to: Slightly Indulgent Tuesday's at SS & GF. Don't forget to stop by and see what everyone is brewing up for healthy inspirations!


  1. Thanks for stopping by my blog! I LOVE your recipes! Quinoa is one of my favorites and the bars sound delicious! It is a small world...I grew up in Marietta! Oh and I am so with you on ice cream...I would eat it all day if I could!

  2. I also love the orange/cranberry flavour combination. I once made a cake with oranges, cranberries and cardamom and it was unexpectedly really, really tasty!

    To answer your question about gluten free beer in bread: I think that you can use pretty much any kind of beer. Obviously lighter beers with impart less of a beer flavour than stronger, darker ones. I used a beer called Mongozo Premium Pilsner, but if you can't find it, try something else and I'm sure it will be just fine! :) Just do be careful as some lighter gluten free beers hardly have any taste, so your bread might not taste very beer like. (Not that I actually know what real beer tastes like... haha)


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